The Massachusetts company that recently opened a lobster processing facility in the former Stinson Seafood cannery in Prospect Harbor has bounced checks to local lobstermen.
Antonio Bussone, president of Chelsea-based Live Lobster Co., confirmed the company has suffered from cash flow problems and bounced checks to suppliers, according to the Bangor Daily News. But he said all outstanding checks to lobstermen had been honored as of Friday. Bussone told the paper the company has had to adjust its financial procedures to accommodate its new product line of frozen lobster products, which can take weeks to reach customers compared with live lobster, which takes just days. Live Lobster has a line of credit with TD Bank, according to the paper. Bussone said the facility processes 20,000 pounds of lobster a day.
The company bought the former cannery in March from Bumble Bee Foods with assistance from state and federal sources. Last month, the company received a $200,000 grant and a $200,000 loan through the Community Development Block Grant program to renovate and buy equipment. The Finance Authority of Maine also loaned the company $750,000.